Overexpression of survivin is correlated with increased invasion and metastasis of colorectal cancer

J Surg Oncol. 2012 May;105(6):520-8. doi: 10.1002/jso.22134. Epub 2011 Nov 7.


Background: The aim of this study was to investigate the association of survivin expression with metastasis of colorectal cancer (CRC).

Methods: RT-PCR and Western blot assays were performed to detect survivin expression in CRC cells and normal intestinal epithelial cell. The expression of survivin gene was also detected in 15 CRC tissues, surrounding and adjacent colon tissues. Moreover, survivin expression in 48 CRC tissues with or without lymph node metastasis was analyzed. Multivariate analysis for lymph node metastasis was performed using logistic regression model. RNA interference was used to inhibit survivin expression in CRC cells and analyze its effect on invasion and metastasis of CRC cells.

Results: The expression levels of survivin mRNA and protein were higher in CRC cells than in normal intestinal epithelial cell line. The average levels of survivin mRNA and protein were higher in CRC tissues than surrounding or adjacent colon tissues (P < 0.05). High survivin expression was an independent factor for predicting lymph node metastasis of CRC (P = 0.043). RNAi-mediated survivin knockdown could significantly inhibit in vitro invasion and in vivo metastasis of CRC cells, which might be inactivation of matrix metalloproteinases.

Conclusion: Targeting survivin will be a potential strategy to suppress metastasis of CRC.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Animals
  • Blotting, Western
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Colorectal Neoplasms / pathology*
  • Epithelial Cells / metabolism
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Inhibitor of Apoptosis Proteins / genetics*
  • Inhibitor of Apoptosis Proteins / metabolism
  • Lymphatic Metastasis / genetics*
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred BALB C
  • Middle Aged
  • Multivariate Analysis
  • Neoplasm Invasiveness / genetics*
  • RNA, Messenger / metabolism
  • Reverse Transcriptase Polymerase Chain Reaction
  • Survivin


  • BIRC5 protein, human
  • Inhibitor of Apoptosis Proteins
  • RNA, Messenger
  • Survivin